Jump to Navigation

Racine Family Law Blog

Converting legal separation into divorce in Wisconsin

Unfortunately, there comes a time in many marriages from Wisconsin and throughout the country when the couple realizes that their decision to tie the knot was wrong. The reasons are innumerable. But before actually filing for divorce, many couples first undergo a legal separation.

Now, the question is how do you convert a legal separation to a divorce? First is by stipulation, in which parties convert a legal separation to a divorce by mutual consent. The FA-4162 court form allows two spouses to convert a legal separation into a divorce. There is no waiting period for this procedure and a legal separation can be converted into a divorce at any time during a separation.

Alimony and its impact on income taxes

It is true that when a couple goes through a divorce, it can be very painful. Hearts break and raw emotions are exposed as a war of words breaks out between the couple. Not only is a divorce emotionally taxing, but it can also have financial implications, too, as a spouse is ordered to pay alimony or spousal support. Wisconsin residents are no exception to this rule.

There are certain factors involved when alimony is considered for federal tax purposes. If the spouses do not file a joint income tax return, the alimony will be taxable. The same rule applies if the alimony payments are made in cash. The person who receives the alimony payments will have to pay taxes on that income. Also, a person is not required to pay alimony if the spouse dies. If the payment is not in the form of child support or a settlement in property-related issues, it will constitute taxable income.

Wisconsin equitable property division often requires legal advice

As many reports indicate, divorce continues to rise in the United States and Wisconsin divorce rates are no exception. When a couple splits, many issues are at stake, including child custody, alimony and property division, which can be a particularly complex matter.

What is the definition of marital property? What happens to assets that spouses acquire after saying, "I do?" A divorcing spouse may not possess the legal knowledge or understanding to stand alone in court for a fair and equitable distribution of marital assets. The support and expertise of an astute lawyer who will effectively present your side in court is essential.

How do you modify child support orders in Wisconsin?

Wisconsin couples will probably agree that divorce can devastate a child. In the best interests of the child, it is better for divorcing couples to maintain a harmonious relationship and avoid any potential conflict. Normally, the child lives with one parent and child support is paid by the other. A child support order can be modified only if there has been a significant change in circumstances.

However, before the child support order is modified, the court will review it. The court will ask for financial information from the child's parents. After the review, the court order can be modified, and as a result, the child support may increase or decrease, depending on the situation.

Wisconsin non-profit provides collaborative divorce to the needy

Wisconsin couples may be aware of the legal divorce option called collaborative divorce that enables married couples to split up without going through elaborate court proceedings. Now, a new non-profit group is working to provide low-income Wisconsin residents the same opportunity to use this type of divorce process. What's more, they can avail the service without burning a big hole in their savings.

The organization, known as the Collaborative Foundation of Wisconsin, brings the advantages of collaborative divorce to low-income residents. A founding member said initially she was quite skeptical about collaborative divorce. However, now she has a lot of faith in a couple parting ways mutually and she is touting the benefits of collaborative divorce to low-income groups who cannot afford high legal fees.

Introduction to child custody in Wisconsin - Part II

Child custody is often a major concern among divorcing couples in Wisconsin. Generally, courts assume that children are happiest when they have a good relationship with both parents. The parent who has custody will make all routine decisions, such as a child's extra-curricular activities, his or her bed time, diet and social activities. Children are always at their best when the parents agree on the child's rules, even when the parents are no longer together.

Considering the best interests of the child, parents should not engage in child custody battles. Both parents need to discuss parenting time and get the agreement approved by the court. Parents may work with family counselors to ensure that the plan is in the best interest of the child. The court usually gives the seal of approval to any agreement that is mutual and is reasonable.

How do you obtain alimony in Racine County, Wisconsin?

Divorce can be a complex issue. There are many factors involved in a divorce; alimony is just one of them. Many divorces in Wisconsin involve payment of alimony. Also referred to as family support, alimony is different from child support. It is also known as maintenance and involves a group of payments made by a spouse to another. This maintenance payment may be made in addition to child support payments.

Alimony is tax deductible and the person who receives the payment has to report it as taxable income. Additionally, if a person gives up his or her right to maintenance, that person is not eligible to return to court to seek alimony again. If the divorcing couple is unable to come to an agreement about the amount or duration of alimony payments, the court will decide on behalf of the couple.

Introduction to child custody in Wisconsin - Part I

Racine, Wisconsin, parents will agree that child custody is often a major concern for those couples who want to divorce. Parents who want the best for their children are sometimes unable to agree on child custody and visitation rights. Fathers today are more hands-on and want to play a more prominent role in the upbringing of their children, so disagreement on parenting time may ensue.

But how is child custody determined in Wisconsin? What are the rights of each parent? A marriage may be irrevocably broken, but does not mean that a parent's relationship with his or her children will come to an end. An agreement about child custody must be reached.

How do child support agencies enforce an order Wisconsin?

Many custodial parents and their children who live in Wisconsin are recipients of child support. The money received takes care of the educational, medical and every day expenses of a child. Therefore, in order to preserve the best interests of the child, child support agencies in the state put forth their best efforts to ensure that all child support orders issued by the court are strictly enforced.

Local child support agencies in Wisconsin monitor all child support cases in order to ensure that non-custodial parents comply with court orders. In case of delinquencies, the agency is empowered to take action against that individual. It is important to understand that cases for collecting back child support can be filed as late as 20 years after the youngest child mentioned in the child support order reaches the age of 18 years.

The discovery process during property division

Wisconsin couples know that divorce brings in its wake not only emotional turbulence, but also financial upheavals. As soon as the divorcing spouses file the divorce papers, the court will ask for information related to their financial, economic and personal situations. They will need to reveal their assets and related financial information, including property, income and debt. This exchange is known as the "discovery" process.

This exchange of information between the court, individuals and their attorneys is the starting point of property division. The court also will make decisions about alimony and child support, in the event tha thte parties do not agree. This discovery process can also take place through informal exchanges of information by the divorcing couples and their attorneys.

FindLaw Network